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Any veterinarians?
Old 12-05-2007, 05:23 PM   #1
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Any veterinarians?

Or someone who has had a similar experience that can offer some advice...

Our dog Jazz has had both rear leg ACL's repaired over the last 5 years. Both surgeries went fine. On the leg we had done 5.5 months ago with a TPLO. She recovered fine from the surgery and has no limp or trouble walking on the leg.

The problem we're having is that about a month ago, she developed two lesions on the inside of the leg, one on the knee and one just below. Looks like a small rupture or puncture about 1.5-2" apart. I cleaned and put neosporin on them figuring she ran through the rose bushes or something else and poked a few holes in herself. The top hole closed up but the bottom one wouldnt. I took her to the vet, a nice old country doc we found thats about a million years old, friendly, good with the animals, always available, and he's got a great staff...but i'm not 100% sold on his full competency for complex problems...

He prescribed an antibiotic, flushed the wound, and after the ten days of pills both holes closed up. Within a couple of days of taking her off the antibiotics, they opened right back up. So the vet put her under, opened up the area figuring he had a foxtail or some foreign body in there. Couldnt find anything. Stitched her up and prescribed another round of antibiotics. The holes closed up. A few days after we took her off the antibiotics, the lower hole opened up and an area about an inch to the right of the original upper hole swelled to about half a golf ball size, then burst open. Hole big enough for me to stick my little finger into with a smaller pen-tip size hole in the tissue beneath.

All of this is on or almost immediately adjacent to the knee.

This vet has referred me back to the guy who did the knee surgery, figuring it may have something to do with that given the area the infection is in.

Anyone have something similar happen, know of problems with this sort of surgery that wouldnt manifest themselves until 3-4 months later, or have any insights? I'm starting to get concerned over the number of surgeries she's had and the plausibility that the knee surgeon will want to put her under again and poke around in there some more.
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:12 PM   #2
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I know nothing about animals but maybe it is a stitch abcess.Those are the areas they usually make incisions on people so maybe your dog is having an allergic reaction to the stitches. I'd go see the vet who did the surgery .Not sure what they use for a graft in dogs but your dog may be rejecting that also .Good luck !
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:41 PM   #3
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Thanks for the info. What they do in a TPLO is cut the top portion of the leg bone off below the knee, turn it and reattach it with a stainless steel plate and screws, the bone heals back together and a lot of scar tissue develops around the repair. It obviates the need for an ACL and produces a very strong joint, but its obviously a major piece of surgery with a tough recovery time. My first thought was something related to the surgery, but it was problem free for months...weird that it'd show up as a problem this late in the game.

I hope to god she's not rejecting some part of the surgical plate. She's been through enough already.
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Old 12-05-2007, 06:52 PM   #4
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hope to god she's not rejecting some part of the surgical plate. She's been through enough already.
People don't usually reject plates but the screws sometimes move and irriate things !
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Old 12-06-2007, 07:39 AM   #5
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After thinking about your dog it sounds like there may be a small foreign object in there that is causeing this problem .It could even be a small piece of gauze left from the surgery .If a screw is causing the problem a simple x-ray would show that .An x-ray may be able to show a foreign object depending on the object . I do not know dogs but I have spent many years in OR's with these kind of cases . Good Luck !
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Old 12-06-2007, 10:45 AM   #6
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The "regular vet" took an x-ray, primarily to satisfy his curiousity with the new TPLO plate system the orthopedic guy used, since he hadnt 'seen one' post-op. What was weird is that the infection seemed (to both of us) to be shallow and in his exploration, no connection going back to the knee or some other part of the leg. Seemed like just a small localized infection you'd get by poking with a stick or other sharp object.

Would a leftover piece of gauze or a suture that didnt dissolve not crop up until 3.5 months later? Thats the weird part.

She's otherwise in fine shape. Playing, running around, eating, no limp, not picking up the leg. In fact, she took on the two male dogs last night in a play fight (she's about 70lbs, they're about 100 and 120) and kicked their butts.
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Old 12-06-2007, 10:46 AM   #7
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Hmm, I hope the "new" TPLO plates werent freshly made in china, where they were probably routed to the export factory to be sprayed with asbestos and lead before packaging...
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Old 12-06-2007, 11:29 AM   #8
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Would a leftover piece of gauze or a suture that didnt dissolve not crop up until 3.5 months later? Thats the weird part.
A suture could do that depending on the suture material they used .Some dissolve slowly .
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Old 12-06-2007, 02:17 PM   #9
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The orthopedic surgeon has her right now, going to remove the plate and screws. He says its a quick procedure, should be no significant recovery time, and she doesnt need it anymore. Could be that an infection developed in the area for a number of reasons and the plate is perpetuating it. At least I'm sure he's a very competent doc and will have a good look around while he's in there.

Poor pup. Three operations on one leg in six months...
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Old 12-06-2007, 02:19 PM   #10
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Poor pup. Three operations on one leg in six months...
Poor pup, poor budget.

Hope the pooch bounces back fast.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Old 12-06-2007, 02:43 PM   #11
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I hope the pup recovers quickly too.
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Old 12-06-2007, 03:25 PM   #12
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Hope your pup does fine !
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Old 12-06-2007, 03:54 PM   #13
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She's otherwise in fine shape. Playing, running around, eating, no limp, not picking up the leg. In fact, she took on the two male dogs last night in a play fight (she's about 70lbs, they're about 100 and 120) and kicked their butts.
Hope she bounces back quickly and resumes her proper place in the pet household
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Old 12-06-2007, 04:51 PM   #14
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also wishing good luck to the puppy dog. wolfpuppy had his operation very early on in the history of tplo. i luckily found one of the few vets then licensed in the procedure. vets flew in from japan to observe the operation.

didn't know the plate can be removed. hopefully that will solve your puppy's problem.

my niece is only 14 yet already enrolled in a satellite school preparing for a career in veterinary medicine (she jumps horses--well, she's grounded this week, so now she only mucks stalls). apparently vet med is not an easy course. there are only 32 colleges throughout the u.s.a. & canada, and from what my brother tells me, competition for entrance is fierce.

anyway, best of luck to the puppy. yer a good guardian to be offering such care.
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Old 12-06-2007, 06:38 PM   #15
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My sister's cat had something sort of similar... a surgery wound that kept re-opening and kept re-infecting about 2 months after the original surgery (I think). It turned out to be a not-quite-so-dissolvable stitch. After it was removed, she healed up just fine.

Hope the same for your dog!

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Old 12-06-2007, 08:18 PM   #16
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She's home and out cold on her memory foam bed. Glazed and dazed. Poor thing.

Of course, the most interesting thing in the world to a 3 year old is the dog thats been gone all day...and the least interesting thing to the dog is the 3 year old. Seems that in 3 year old translation-speak, "stay away from the dog" means "see how close you can get to the dog before I tell you to get away again".

*sigh*
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Old 12-06-2007, 09:19 PM   #17
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Glad the pup is doing better and I hope he will be back up and giving Gabe a good playmate soon.
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Old 12-06-2007, 09:23 PM   #18
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just cut this from another site. kinda cute. hope you don't mind me pasting to your doggy thread:

IF...

If you can start the day without caffeine,
If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains,
If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles,
If you can eat the same food every and be grateful for it,
If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time,
If you can overlook it when those who love you take it out on you when something goes wrong through no fault of yours,
If you can take criticism and blame without resentment,
If you can resist treating a rich friend better than a poor friend,
If you can face the world without lies and deceit,
If you can conquer tension without medical help,
If you can relax without liquor,
If you can sleep without the aid of drugs,
If you can say honestly that deep in your heart you have no prejudice against creed, color, religion or politics,

Congratulations! You have reached the same level of development as your dog. - Anonymous
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Old 12-07-2007, 06:39 AM   #19
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Awww poor pup, hope this last surgery solved the problem.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:00 PM   #20
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My thoughts and prayers are with you cfb...I am going through the same thing with Casanova's neutering infection....week two of antibiotics and wearing the cone....thank god your pup has someone like you to give him a chance!
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